Ho! Ho! Ho! The 6th Annual Holiday Contest Is Here!!!

Deck the halls!

Light the menorah!

Fill the Kikombe cha Umoja!

It’s time for…

The 6th Annual Holiday Contest!!!!

12-days-1

WA-HOOO!!!! 🙂

The Contest:  Write a children’s holiday story (children here defined as approximately age 12 and under) using the basic format/concept of The Twelve Days Of Christmas!  Your story may be poetry or prose, silly or serious or sweet, religious or not, based on Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or whatever you celebrate, but is not to exceed 300 words (I know!  So much freedom after the Halloweensie Contest 🙂 )  (It can be as short as you like (the judges will be grateful 🙂 , you are welcome and encouraged to write shorter, but no more than 300!  Title not included in word count.)  The field is wide open!  Have fun!  The more creative the better!  No illustration notes please. (And yes, if you feel compelled to submit more than one entry you may, just remember you’re competing against yourself!)

Post:  Your entry should be posted on your blog between right now this very second and Monday December 12 at 11:59 PM EST, and your post-specific link should be added to the link list below.  We’re trying a new system for this contest – the one I use for Perfect Picture Book Friday – fingers crossed it works better than the other one for everyone!  This post and the list will remain up through Thursday December 15 for your reading pleasure (no WYRI or PPBF.)  If you don’t have a blog but would like to enter, please copy and paste your entry into the comments on my December 8th post.  (If anyone has trouble commenting, which unfortunately happens, please email me and I’ll post your entry for you! But please don’t send attachments!  Just copy and paste your story into the email.)  Also, please only post your entry once – either in the comment section of my blog or on the link list.

The Judging:  My lovely assistants and I will narrow down the entrants to 10-12 finalists (depending on the number of entries) which will be posted here on Friday December 16 (or, if we’re desperate for a little extra time, Saturday December 17) for you to vote on for a winner.  The vote will be closed on Monday December 19 at 5 PM EST and the winners will be announced on Tuesday December 20.  Whoever gets the most votes will be first and so on down to tenth place.  Judging criteria will be kid appeal/kid-friendliness, creativity, quality of story, quality of writing, and originality.  If we can post the finalists sooner and move everything up a bit we will, but with 300 word entries it takes longer…

The Prizes!:  And oh, my! there are some good ones!

A Picture Book Manuscript Critique and Chat with Sarah (Miller) Rockett of Sleeping Bear Press (ms due January 1st, chat in February) kindly donated by Jodell Sadler and KidLit College

– Enrollment in literary agent Jodell Sadler‘s Pacing Picture Books 2 WOW picture book writing class!

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– A Picture Book Manuscript Critique by the fabulous Cori Doerffeld, author/illustrator of Penny Loves Pink, Little Bunny Foo Foo, and many more…!

penny_cover   bunny-foo-foo

– A Picture Book Manuscript Critique by the awesome Vivian Kirkfield, author of Show Me How: Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting And Cooking, and the forthcoming picture book from Creston Books, Sweet Dreams, Sarah.

sweet-dreams-new-on-amazon            vivian-kirkfield

– A Picture Book Manuscript Critique by talented agent Jodell Sadler (or other staff of Kidlit College)

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– Enrollment in Making Picture Book Magic (my online picture book writing class – in January or a later month to be mutually agreed upon by the winner and me)

 2017 Children’s Writer’s And Illustrator’s Market  and a $25 Amazon Gift Card.  (2 available)

Book Markets For Children’s Writers 2017 and Magazine Markets For Children’s Writers 2017 published by The Institute Of Children’s Literature.

– a pack of Susanna Leonard Hill’s amazing What’s The Story Cards  (scroll about 1/2 way down the page… (2 available)

I can’t thank these authors and other industry professionals enough for their incredible generosity!  Please visit their sites, buy and recommend their books and services to your writer friends and/or friends with kids, write them nice reviews on Amazon, GoodReads etc if you’ve read and liked their books, and show your appreciation to them in any way you can!

Now.

The time has come for my sample.  And I think I can say unequivocally that this is the worst sample I have ever written 🙂  Are you ready?  You’re going to have to grit your teeth to get through this one 🙂  But that should be very comforting to all of you because you can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that ANYthing you wrote is better than this! 🙂

Noel’s 12 Days Of Christmas (209 words)

On the First Day of Christmas Noel sighed miserably
Alone by her little fir tree.
“It’s not Christmas without company.”

But the mice in the walls overheard…
And they made sure to pass on the word…

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas the door chimed merrily.
Noel answered curiously.
And what in the world should she see?
But…
Twelve moose a-munching
Eleven bears a-lunching
Ten reindeer shedding
Nine otters sledding
Eight foxes yapping
Seven possums napping
Six cats with kittens

Five singing wolves

Four flying squirrels
Three loud crows
Two playful mice
And they said, “We will be company!”
So Noel let them in joyfully.

But before long these hairy, loud guests
Made the house a bewildering mess!
And Noel’s thoughts turned back longingly
To the quiet and peace by her tree!

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas Noel said graciously,
“I thank you for your company.”
And then…
Twelve moose a-munching
Eleven bears a-lunching
Ten reindeer shedding
Nine otters sledding
Eight foxes yapping
Seven possums napping
Six cats with kittens

Five singing wolves

Four flying squirrels
Three loud crows
Two playful mice
Headed off to another party.

On the Twelfth Night of Christmas Noel sighed happily
Alone by her little fir tree…
With one kitten for sweet company.

So now!  Is everyone filled with confidence about their entries?  I certainly hope so after that display!  Never let it be said that I’m not willing to make a fool of myself for you guys 🙂  It just proves how much I love you 🙂

I can’t wait to read all of your (much better!) stories!  I hope there will be a lot – the more the merrier!  And there are still nearly 5 days to write, so you have time if you haven’t written yet and want to join the fun.  Feel free to spread the word to your writing friends as well.  If you just want to enjoy reading, that’s great too!  We need all the readers we can get, so feel free to spread the word to parents and teachers!  And what better way to entertain yourself and your kids while waiting for the holiday goodies to bake?  Or get someone to read aloud while everyone else wraps presents 🙂

Remember to put your post-specific link (not your general blog link or people will find the wrong page if you post again before the contest is over) in the list below!  OR copy and paste your entry into the comment section if you don’t have a blog!  (I am truly hoping this form and spread sheet will work, but I made them without help at midnight and it’s entirely possible I screwed up!  If that is the case, I will get help to fix them ASAP!!! I experimented with mine and it worked so…fingers crossed!  Please allow several minutes for the list to update and refresh your browser before panicking and thinking your entry didn’t load!)

Rejoice! and let the festivities begin!!! 🙂

And don’t miss the additional 41 fabulous entries in the comment section below!
(Scroll through comments to view)

1.  Sneaky Snoop: A Cautionary Christmas Tale – Rebekah
2.  Bear’s Longest Twelve Days Ever – Karen
3.  The Seven Days Before Hanukkah – Robin
4.  A Woodland Christmas Countdown – Jane
5.  Grandma’s Christmas – Maggie
6.  The Twelve Days Of Zoo Christmas – Kim
7.  The Eight Nights Of Chanukah – Melissa
8.  The Twelve Puppy-Days Of Christmas -Tilly The Spaniel
9.  The Twelve Days Of Giftmas – Mary
10. The Twelve Days Of Christmas – Anita
11. 12 Days After Christmas – Kathryn
12. The 8 Days Of Hanukkah – Leah
13. A Plane Ticket In A Rare Tree – Hermanator
14. Twelve Days Til Christmas – Kathy
15. The Twelve Days Of Petmas – Anne
16. The Christmas Cookie Crook  – Susan
17. Kindness Counts To Twelve! – Tracy
18. A Child’s First 12 Days Of Christmas – Ingrid
19. Sweet Hopeful Hymns We Sing – Rebekah
20. Farmer Bubbe’s Chanukah – Joni
21. Twelve Surprises For Sally – Lorraine
22. The Ways We Celebrate Holidays: A Merry Mash-Up – Jodi
23. The Twelve Days Of Santa’s Surprise – Ann
24. The Twelve Days Of Canadian Winter – Anne
25. The Twelve Days After Christmas – Sam
26. The Christmas Parade – Judy
27. The Twelve Days Of Kittymess -Kristin
28. Chocolate For Santa – Katherine
29. The Sweetest Treat – Lauren
30. A FURever Home For Christmas – Mariah
31. The Twelve Nights Of Christmas – Marie
32. Twelve Crows At Christmas – Jennifer
33. The 12 Emotions Of Arbor Day – Jen
34. Raindrop’s Gift – Robyn
35. A Gift For The Princess – Monica
36. The Woodland Christmas Tree – Lucretia
37. Burrito’s Epiphany Gift – Carmen
38. The Partridge In-A-Pear-Tree – Elizabeth
39. Tis Flu Season – Mona
40. The 12 Gifts Of The Holidays – Liza
41. A Cold And Clammy Christmas? – Shelley

541 thoughts on “Ho! Ho! Ho! The 6th Annual Holiday Contest Is Here!!!

  1. viviankirkfield says:

    We’ve all been waiting for this, Susanna…and now it is here! Hip hip hooray! Thank you for always being an incredible mentor to writers.
    I love your sample/example…glad that Noel had some sweet company.
    I’ll be posting and linking mine on Friday…can’t wait to read all the great stories. 😉

  2. heavenlyhashformoms says:

    Ha ha! You captured the true craziness of the holidays followed by the blissful serenity of when it’s all over! Nice job!!! Just wanted to say thank you for this fun and inspiring blog you have created…I so look forward to it!!! It’s kind of funny how you can get to know someone through the computer…but I guess that happens when you are sharing virtual chocolate😀! Merry Christmas and thanks so much for all you put into this!! I wish you much chocolate in the new year!

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      I’m so glad you like my blog and enjoy the contests! That really makes my day, and I thank you for all your kind words… and wishes for chocolate 🙂 I’m assuming your real name isn’t HeavenlyHash… although that does have a nice ring to it and brings to mind chocolate delight :)… Do you mind telling me what it is? Merry Christmas to you too!!!! 🙂

  3. ptnozell says:

    Ding, dong, it’s Holiday Contest time, our favorite time of year! Inspiring entry, Susanna; you’ve set the bar high, as always. Cupcake, I’d like to think that Noel is a dog herself, that’s why she’s content with a kitten companion.

    And now, adieu, I’ve work to do, to whip my entry into shape.

  4. Rebekah Hoeft says:

    Well, this was fun! Thanks for the holiday inspiration, Susanna!

    Sneaky Snoop: A Cautionary Christmas Tale (292 words)

    Ten days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Found a gift that me whisper, “Whoop!”

    Nine days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Eight days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Seven days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Six days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    SIX PAIRS OF SOCKS??!
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Five days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    New underwear.
    SIX PAIRS OF SOCKS?!
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Four days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Ugly scratchy sweater.
    New underwear.
    SIX PAIRS OF SOCKS?!
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Three days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Rocks wrapped so nicely.
    Ugly scratchy sweater.
    New underwear.
    SIX PAIRS OF SOCKS?!
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    Two days before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Two lumps of coal.
    Rocks wrapped so nicely.
    Ugly scratchy sweater.
    New underwear.
    SIX PAIRS OF SOCKS?!
    Wooden slingshot!
    Yellow yo-yo!
    Bright bicycle!
    T’was a gift that made me whoopity-whoop!

    The day before Christmas, I snuck a sneaky snoop:
    Found a note from Mother,
    It said, “You think you’re sneaky,
    But you are not really.
    Your gifts are all rehidden
    Might not find them until
    FIVE DAYS FROM NOW!!
    It’ll be fun
    Since you like
    Hunting for your gifts
    Merry Christmas, son! I love you, sneaky snoop!”

  5. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR KAREN

    Bear’s Longest Twelve Days Ever (234 words) by Karen Morgan

    On the first day of Christmas, my BooBear came to me,
    Begging for a present…or three.

    On the second day of Christmas, my BooBear asked of me,
    “Please make some pudding?”
    “Please make some pie?”
    “And, I’d really love a present ’neath the tree.”

    On the third day of Christmas, my BooBear wanted me,
    to make strings of popcorn,
    go to the mall,
    dig out decorations,
    And, to know about his present…or three.

    On the fourth day of Christmas, my BooBear sent to me,
    emails with more hints,
    several chocolate mints,
    notes scattered ‘round,
    a letter in the mail,
    And, another mention of some gifts for he.

    On the fifth day of Christmas, my BooBear worked with me,
    to hang up the stockings,
    put up the wreaths,
    shovel the walkway,
    string up some bright lights,
    make a few snow angels,
    And, he added in some present hints for free.

    On the sixth day of Christmas, my BooBear said to me…
    let’s buy bows and wrapping,
    carol at the neighbors,
    sled down the hill,
    drink up some hot cocoa,
    make some festive cookies
    And, let’s decorate the holiday tree.

    On the seventh day of Christmas – the eight through twelfth, as well,
    BooBear was dragging,
    yawning and stretching,
    eyelids getting heavy,
    deep breaths a starting,
    sweet dreams on their way,
    with his half-asleep words mumbling…
    “Some presents for BooBear would sure be swell.”

  6. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR ROBIN

    The Seven Days Before Hanukkah
    By Robin Brett Wechsler

    (word count: 286)

    On the seventh day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “We are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the sixth day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the fifth day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “Let’s get colorful candles.
    You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the fourth day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “Take out the shiny menorah.
    Let’s get colorful candles.
    You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the third day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “We’ll fry jelly doughnuts.
    Take out the shiny menorah.
    Let’s get colorful candles.
    You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the second day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “Hang up the Hanukkah banner.
    We’ll fry jelly doughnuts.
    Take out the shiny menorah.
    Let’s get colorful candles.
    You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the day before Hanukkah
    my parents said to me,
    “Start singing Rock of Ages.
    Hang up the Hanukkah banner.
    We’ll fry jelly doughnuts.
    Take out the shiny menorah.
    Let’s get colorful candles.
    You can spin the dreidel!
    But we are not getting a Christmas tree.”

    On the first night of Hanukkah
    I replied to my parents,
    “I love to sing that song,
    see our decorations,
    eat the fried doughnuts (and potato latkes!),
    put out the shiny menorah,
    light the colorful candles,
    and play the game of dreidel…
    But I also made for us a Hanukkah tree.”

    (Is it time to open my present?)

  7. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR JANE

    A Woodland Christmas Countdown (256 words)
    By Jane Baskwill
    On the first day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw a very special, Merry Christmas tree.

    On the second day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw two vines for garland,

    On the third day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw three empty bird nests,

    On the fourth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw four pretty pine cones,

    On the fifth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw five dancing twig deer,

    On the sixth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw six curls of birch bark,

    On the seventh day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw seven colorful feathers,

    On the eighth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw eight cattail candles,

    On the ninth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw nine blades of dried grass,

    On the tenth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw ten berry clusters,

    On the eleventh day of Christmas, while walking through the woods,
    I saw eleven seeds for sharing,

    On the twelfth day of Christmas, while walking through the woods, I saw…
    Twelve bustling elves,
    Eleven seeds for sharing,
    Ten berry clusters,
    Nine blades of dried grass,
    Eight cattail candles,
    Seven colorful feathers,
    Six curls of birch bark,
    Five dancing twig deer,
    Four pretty pine cones,
    Three empty bird nests,
    Two vines for garland,
    And a…
    Very special, Merry Christmas tree.

  8. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR MAGGIE

    GRANDMA’S CHRISTMAS

    On the first day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the second day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me two sweet-filled advents and a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the third day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me three Christmas Cakes, two sweet-filled advents and a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the fourth day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me four chocolate Santas, three Christmas cakes, two sweet–filled advents and a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the fifth day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me five turkey dinners, four chocolate Santas, three Christmas cakes, two sweet-filled advents and a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the sixth day of Christmas my grandkids gave to me six Christmas puddings, five turkey dinners, four chocolate Santas, three Christmas cakes, two sweet-filled advents and a lit and dressed Christmas tree.

    On the seventh day of Christmas my grandkids decided they couldn’t wait for Christmas, decided Grandma didn’t need all that food anyway, came around and ate it all and gave me a woolly vest and bloomers and a lit and dressed Christmas tree!!

    By Maggie Jeffrey

  9. Kim Ball says:

    THE TWELVE DAYS OF ZOO CHRISTMAS
    By Kim Ball

    On the first day of Christmas, Elephant gave McGee the bark of a cinnamon tree.

    On the second day of Christmas, Tortoise gave McGee two ginger roots.

    On the third day of Christmas, Penguin gave McGee three clove buds.

    On the fourth day of Christmas, Rhinoceros gave McGee four vanilla beans.

    On the fifth day of Christmas, Owl gave McGee five nutmeg seeds.

    On the sixth day of Christmas, Gorilla gave McGee six juicy lemons.

    On the seventh day of Christmas, Lion gave McGee seven tubs of butter.

    On the eighth day of Christmas, Hyena gave McGee eight jars of molasses.

    On the ninth day of Christmas, Giraffe gave McGee nine scoops of raisins.

    On the tenth day of Christmas, Armadillo gave McGee ten bags of sugar.

    On the eleventh day of Christmas, Chameleon gave McGee eleven sacks of flour.

    On the twelfth day of Christmas, Ostrich gave McGee twelve fresh laid eggs.

    “Spread the word, Ostrich,” said McGee. “Party tonight!”

    At closing time the zoo filled with delicious, spicy scents. Every nose quivered as the animals gathered.

    Then McGee arrived with a wagon full of gingerbread cookies and a barrel of lemonade.
    “My dearest friends, you showered me gifts and love. Now I’m sharing them with you.”

    The animals trumpeted, hooted, roared and laughed.

    “Before you dig in, here’s something I wrote for you.”

    McGee sang. Soon the animals joined in. They finished like this:

    On the twelfth day of Christmas,
    my best friends gave to me:
    Twelve fresh laid eggs
    Eleven sacks of flour
    Ten bags of sugar
    Nine scoops of raisins
    Eight jars of molasses
    Seven pounds of butter
    Six juicy lemons
    Five nutmeg seeds
    Four vanilla beans
    Three clove buds
    Two ginger roots
    And the bark of a cinnamon tree!

  10. Melissa Berger Stoller says:

    THE EIGHT NIGHTS OF CHANUKAH
    By Melissa Stoller
    169 Words

    On the first night of Chanukah I made my family, a menorah for all the world to see.

    On the second night of Chanukah, my Papa bought for me, a dreidel spinning joyfully.

    On the third night of Chanukah, my Mama gave to me, chocolate gelt as sweet as sweet can be.

    On the fourth night of Chanukah, my sister read to me, a book about Judah Maccabee.

    On the fifth night of Chanukah, my brother sang to me, holiday songs fit for royalty.

    On the sixth night of Chanukah, my Grandpa baked for me, jelly donuts oiled specially.

    On the seventh night of Chanukah, my Nana wrote for me, a passed down latke recipe.

    On the eighth night of Chanukah, together with me, the smiling faces of my family . . .

    Eight happy nights,

    Seven potato bites,

    Six treats stuffed right,

    Five songs taking flight,

    Four stories of might,

    Three coin delights,

    Two tops spinning tight,

    One menorah burning bright . . .

    Happy Chanukah on this festival of light!

  11. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR TILLY THE SPANIEL 🙂

    The Twelve Puppy-Days of Christmas
    by Tilly the Spaniel (295 words)

    On the first day of Christmas my puppy said to me
    I really need a quick pee.

    On the second day of Christmas my puppy said to me,
    Who shut the door?
    Because I really need a quick pee.

    On the third day of Christmas my puppy said to me
    Cross both my legs
    Because I really need a quick pee

    On the fourth day of Christmas my puppy said to me
    Please let me out
    Because I really need a quick pee

    On the fifth day of Christmas my puppy howled at me
    I’ve drunk the sea!
    Please let me out.
    Cross both my legs.
    Who shut the door?
    Because I really need a quick pee.

    On the sixth day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Six rivers flowing,
    Barking I really need a quick pee.

    On the seventh day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Seven puddles splashing,
    Whining I really need a quick pee.

    On the eighth day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Eight clouds a raining,
    Yapping I really need a quick pee.

    On the ninth day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Nine ponds a swimming,
    Panting I really need a quick pee.

    On the tenth day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Ten bottles fizzing,
    Burping I really need a quick pee.

    On the eleventh day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Eleven oceans roaring,
    Growling I really need a quick pee.

    On the twelfth day of Christmas my puppy googled me
    Twelve icebergs floating,
    Eleven oceans roaring,
    Ten bottles fizzing,
    Nine ponds a swimming,
    Eight clouds a raining,
    Seven puddles splashing,
    Six rivers flowing,
    I’ve drunk the sea!
    Slink out the door,
    Tail ‘tween my legs.
    Don’t shout at me.
    There’s a present left under the tree…!

  12. Mary Forness Miller (@Daizylublue) says:

    THE TWELVE DAYS OF GIFTMAS
    By Mary Miller
    297 Words

    On the first day of Giftmas my grandma sent a record: The Partridge Family – Greatest Hits.

    She added a note. This is Doug’s favorite music.

    “Mom, who’s The Partridge Family? And who’s Doug?”

    On the second day she sent me a turtle.

    Grandma wrote: Kyle, this is Doug.

    “Mom, is it safe to mail a turtle?”

    On the third day, three old french fries.

    Doug’s favorite food.

    “Mom, should turtles eat fast food?”

    On the fourth day of Giftmas my grandma sent me four squawking parakeets.

    Doug’s best friends.

    “Mom, does Grandma volunteer at a zoo?”

    On the fifth day she sent me four metal swings and a plastic ring.

    The swings are for the birds. The ring is Doug’s favorite toy.

    “Mom, call Santa. I added an aquarium and a birdcage to my wish list.”

    On the sixth, a frozen goose.

    YUCK!

    Don’t let the parakeets know, it makes them nervous.

    “Mom, please tell me you’re cooking a turkey for Christmas dinner.”

    On the seventh day of Giftmas my grandma sent an aquarium and a cage.

    Oops, should have sent these first.

    “Mom, look! Doug’s swimming! The birds are bathing!”

    On the eighth day, Grandma sent a maid.

    Sorry, I know Doug and the birds are messy.

    “Mom, check out my room!”

    On the ninth, an invitation.

    A dance to celebrate Doug, the birds, and you!

    “Mom, I wish grandma could be here for Christmas.”

    On tenth day of Giftmas my grandma sent a surprise.

    Open the front door. KNOCK. KNOCK. KNOCK.

    “Mom, it’s GRANDPA and GRANDMA!”

    On the eleventh we chose the perfect party music.

    “Don’t forget Doug’s favorite song!”

    “Mom, do you have a record player?”

    On the twelfth day of Giftmas, we danced around the tree.

    “Grandma, this is the best Giftmas ever!”

  13. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR ANITA

    The Twelve Days of Christmas by Anita Banks

    On the first day of Christmas Momma said to me,
    “Tuck in your shirt, child of mine.”

    On the second day of Christmas Daddy said to me,
    “Put away your toys, child of mine.”

    On the third day of Christmas my teacher said to me,
    “Turn in your homework, student of mine.”

    On the fourth day of Christmas my grandma said to me,
    “Eat your vegetables, grandchild of mine.”

    On the fifth day of Christmas my grandpa said to me,
    “Let’s shovel the snow, grandchild of mine.”

    On the sixth day of Christmas my sister said to me,
    “I have but one chocolate for you, brother of mine.”

    On the seventh day of Christmas
    I said, “Have my two chocolates, sister of mine.”

    On the eighth day of Christmas
    I said, “Let’s make a snowman, grandfather of mine.”

    On the ninth day of Christmas
    I said, “Help me make a pie, grandmother of mine.”

    On the tenth day of Christmas
    I said, “Here is a sweet treat, teacher of mine.”

    On the eleventh day of Christmas
    I said, “Play catch with me, daddy of mine.”

    On the twelfth day of Christmas
    I said, “Mamma of mine, I’ve tucked in my shirt, picked up my toys, ate my vegetables, shoveled snow, shared chocolate, made a pie, played in the snow, gifted a treat, and played ball. Is it now Christmas day?”

  14. Kathryn Rammell says:

    12 DAYS AFTER CHRISTMAS (300 words)
    by Kathryn Rammell

    Dear Mrs. Claus,

    Sorry for the delay!
    Had some trouble with the sleigh.
    The day after Christmas was blustery
    and we careened into an old pear tree.

    Day two after Christmas I took the sleigh to a shop.
    I had hoped it would only be a quick stop,
    But the mechanics made me twist my gloves.
    Guess that’s what I get for hiring doves.

    The doves didn’t help out a lick
    So day three I hired a chick.
    Not sure why I trusted a hen
    To help me take up flight again…

    Day four after Christmas, I tried to phone.
    I know how you hate being home alone.
    But out here there is such poor connection,
    I’ll try again when there’s better reception.

    On the fifth day I bought you a beautiful ring
    So upon my return my neck you won’t wring.

    On day six I hired several grey geese.
    and looked for a short-term sleigh on lease.
    But while I waited, stuck on the ground,
    all the geese were just lying around.

    Day seven, I fired the geese and hired swans,
    But when I returned they were all gone!
    I searched for the birds and found them swimming,
    A sight that left me far from grinning.

    I decided to bring in a brand new team.
    No more birdbrains for me, or so it would seem.
    Maids, Ladies, and Lords; they’d get the job done!
    But when I checked back, they were just having fun.
    Dancing and leaping, while my wallet they’re milking.
    I’ve been so depressed with all of this bilking.

    Day eleven and the sleigh’s all gone but its piping.
    Apparently money’s not all they’ve been swiping…
    Day twelve after Christmas and I’ve decided I’m done.
    I’ve started walking toward home, beating my drum.

    Sincerely,
    Mr. C

  15. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR LEAH

    The 8 Days of Hanukkah by Leah Heilman Schanke

    On the 1st day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me, a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 2nd day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 3rd day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 4th day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    4 dreidels spinning
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 5th day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    5 Maccabees
    4 dreidels spinning
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 6th day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    6 latkes frying
    5 Maccabees
    4 dreidels spinning
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 7th day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    7 rabbis dancing
    6 latkes frying
    5 Maccabees
    4 dreidels spinning
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

    On the 8th day of Hanukkah, my parents gave to me:
    8 stars of David
    7 rabbis dancing
    6 latkes frying
    5 Maccabees
    4 dreidels spinning
    3 chocolate coins
    2 jelly donuts
    and a menorah on a gold plate.

  16. hermanator33 says:

    A Plane Ticket in a Rare Tree

    I get to visit my Grandfather in Florida for Christmas but there’s a catch. My ticket is somewhere on a scavenger hunt, to be found in clues I assume.
    The first clue of Christmas my Pop-Pop sent to me….
    “Look for it in a in a rare tree. “
    I start at the park, but there’s no a rare tree, just two turtle loves walking s-l-o-w-l-y and holding hands.
    “Excuse me, have you seen a rare tree?”
    “No. Check. the. lobby. of the French Inn.”
    Ugh Turtles. I run toward the lobby. Am I holiday hallucinating? Is that four birds making phone calls? I skip a bird conversation and head for the Lost and Found.
    No luck, all I see are five gold earrings! Who has five ears? Six dolls that look like geishas lying are in there too, but no rare tree.
    I walk back to the park to plant myself on a bench. Is that my friend Swansa going swimming?
    “Hi Swansa! Is your maid still making you drink those Smart Milk Smoothies?
    “Daily. Why?” Swansa asks looking a rare case of confused.
    “I’m looking for a rare tree. Want to help?”

    “Look out! This delivery guy is not slowing down, ” Swansa says as she pushes me to the grass.
    “Sorry, I have to get these late t-shirts to the Lord of the Dance gift shop before the show ends.”
    I’m wobbly from my fall and walking like a piping sandpiper. My head feels like twelve drummers are pounding on my brain.
    I take out my phone to listen to the message again. This time I laugh and laugh. Swansa looks concerned about my head.
    “What is it?” She asks.
    Well…… It turns out Pop-pop actually said,
    “The ticket has been mailed to me.” Bad signal, sorry.

  17. Kathy Elstad says:

    Twelve Days Till Christmas

    It’s 12 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    12 pairs of polka dot socks!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 11 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    11 Christmas cookies – yum!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 10 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    10 ballerinas dancing round the Christmas tree!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 9 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    9 candy canes to hang upon the tree!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 8 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    8 little Santas smiling up at me!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 7 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    7 Christmas books – all for me to read!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 6 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    6 little tea cups for 6 cups of tea!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 5 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    5 Golden Rings!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 4 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    4 teddy bears wanting to snuggle with me!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 3 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    3 mystery gifts – What could they be?
    From whom could they be?

    It’s 2 days till Christmas!
    Ding Dong – Oh, a package for me!
    2 ornaments — Santa and Mrs. Clause!
    From whom could they be?

    It’s Christmas Day!
    Ding Dong – No, package for me?
    No, surprise, it’s Grandma BEE with a hug for me!
    That’s from whom it could be!

    Merry Christmas!

  18. Anne Cavanaugh Sawan says:

    The Twelve Days Of Petmas.

    On the first day of Petmas my parents gave to me a grey, fluffy kitten named Fifi.

    On the second day of Petmas my grandma gave to me two chatty parrots.

    On the third day of Petmas my grandpa gave to me three quiet goldfish.

    On the fourth day of Petmas my brother gave to me four hairy spiders.

    On the fifth day of Petmas, Jimmy Sullivan gave to me five fire ants! Four hairy spiders, three quiet goldfish, two chatty parrots and a grey, fluffy kitten named Fifi.

    On the sixth day of Petmas my sister gave to me six llamas a’ spitting.

    On the seventh day of Petmas my cousins gave to me seven skunks a’ stinking.

    On the eighth day of Petmas my neighbor gave to me eight moles a’ digging.

    On the ninth day of Petmas my auntie gave to me nine hens a-squawking.

    On the tenth day of Petmas my mailman gave to me ten dogs a’ howling.

    On the eleventh day of Petmas my teacher gave to me eleven creepy centipedes.

    On the twelfth day of Petmas Santa gave to me twelve flying reindeer, eleven creepy centipedes, ten dogs a’ howling, nine hens a’ squawking, eight moles a’ digging, seven skunks a’ stinkin’, six llamas a’ spitting, five fire ants! Four hairy spiders, three quiet goldfish, two chatty parrots. Goodbye, I’m flying away with my kitten named Fifi.

    • Susanna Leonard Hill says:

      It’s funny, Greg – it didn’t seem that hard to me when I thought up the prompt, but I struggled with it too! (Probably would have struggled less if I’d had more than an hour to come up with my sample… but other actual deadlines loomed beforehand that took precedence and my time ran out!) I’m glad you came up with an entry – I enjoyed Scrappy Steve 🙂

  19. Susan Schade says:

    THE CHRISTMAS COOKIE CROOK
    By: Susan Schade (193 words)

    On the twelfth day of Christmas,
    Detective Danish was called in to find the Christmas Cookie Crook.
    “Start at the beginning,” he told the cookies still on the plate.
    Fig Newton began,
    “On the eleventh day of Christmas, before the Platter Party…
    Eleven Linzers left,
    Ten Truffles split,
    Nine nonexistent Nut Balls,
    Eight absent Anises,
    Seven vanished Stars,
    Six no-show Shortbreads,
    Five Spritz disappeared,
    Four missing Macaroons,
    Three lost Thumbprints,
    Two AWOL Tarts,
    And one misplaced Biscotti.”
    Detective Danish smacked his lips, “Hmmm, interesting, and appetizing.”
    “Did you see anything suspicious, Fruitcake?”
    “No, I didn’t. I’m very busy. Everyone loves me.”
    He questioned the milk.
    The milk was sour and tight lipped so the Detective moved on.
    “Paper towel, did you see anything during clean up?”
    “Why am I only invited to clean up?” She sobbed.
    Detective Danish knew in his filling that something wasn’t right.
    “NO ONE LOVES FRUITCAKE! He’s the Christmas Cookie Crook!”
    Detective Danish freed the missing cookies from the fruitcake box.
    The cookies cried, “Detective Danish cracked the case!”
    and presented him with an invitation to the Platter Party.
    Fruitcake was sent to the fridge with no parole.

  20. chattytcp says:

    Kindness Counts to Twelve! (300 words)
    On The First day of Christmas, Evergreen gave to me…a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Second, Third & Fourth day, Evergreen gave to me…big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Fifth day of Christmas, Evergreen gave to me…
    Time for C h a r i t y!
    Big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Sixth, Seventh & Eighth day, Evergreen gave to me…thank you notes for thanking, generous hands for helping, sweet words for hearing.
    Time for C h a r i t y!
    Big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Ninth day of Christmas, Evergreen gave to me…
    Laughter for cheering, thank you notes for thanking, generous hands for helping, sweet words for hearing.
    Time for C h a r i t y!
    Big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Tenth & Eleventh day, Evergreen gave to me…Groceries for sharing, coats for the shivering, laughter for cheering, thank you notes for thanking, generous hands for helping, sweet words for hearing.
    Time for C h a r i t y!
    Big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~
    On The Twelfth day of Christmas, Evergreen gave to me…Kindness for giving, groceries for sharing, coats for the shivering, laughter for cheering, thank you notes for thanking, generous hands for helping, sweet words for hearing.
    Time for C h a r i t y!
    Big arms for hugging, strong legs for lifting, eyes for seeing good, and a heart for spreading
    ~LOV—-E~

  21. ingridboydston says:

    A Child’s First 12 Days of Christmas
    80 words by Ingrid Boydston

    1 star on the tree
    2 candles to light
    3 stockings to hang by the chimney at night
    4 presents to give
    5 more to unwrap
    6 holiday stories to read on my lap
    7 sweet songs of the Christ child’s birth
    8 fancy cards saying “Peace Here on Earth!”
    9 shiny ornaments glitter like snow
    10 lovely lights make the Christmas tree glow
    11 long months! We have waited all year.
    The 12 Days of Christmas are finally here!

    I’m so looking forward to reading the other entries! It won’t be for a couple of days but I wish everyone the happiest of holiday seasons! Thanks Susanna for another round of fun! Hmm, maybe I use too many exclamation marks? Nope, just that happy! :)!

  22. Rebekah Hoeft says:

    Sweet Hopeful Hymns We Sing (288 words)

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Hark the Glad Sound!
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Come, Expected Jesus
    Hark the Glad Sound!
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    In the Bleak Midwinter
    Once in David’s City
    Come, Expected Jesus
    Hark the Glad Sound!
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Away in the Manger
    In a Little Stable
    In the Bleak Midwinter
    Once in David’s City
    Come, Expected Jesus
    Hark the Glad Sound!
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

    In the days before Christmas, sweet hopeful hymns we sing
    Oh Come All Ye Faithful
    Joy to the World
    Away in the Manger
    In a Little Stable
    In the Bleak Midwinter
    Once in David’s City
    Come Expected Jesus
    Hark the Glad Sound!
    Lift up Your Heads
    Savior, Come
    Come, Emmanuel
    Preparing for the Advent of Our King.

  23. Joni Klein-Higger says:

    FARMER BUBBE’S CHANUKAH
    by Joni Klein-Higger

    KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK

    On the first night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    One sack of meal.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Neigh”)

    TAP TAP TAP

    On the second night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Two cups of oil.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Oink “)

    RAP RAP RAP

    On the third night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Three yellow onions.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Meh”)

    CLICK CLICK CLICK

    On the fourth night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Four fresh eggs.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Bawk”)

    THUMP THUMP THUMP

    On the fifth night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Five shakes of salt.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Moo”)

    RAT TAT TAT

    On the sixth night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Six white potatoes.
    “Oh, my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Woof”)

    SCRATCH SCRATCH SCRATCH

    On the seventh night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe see?
    Seven juicy apples.
    “Oh my. Who could have left this for me?”
    (“Meow”)
    On the eighth night of Chanukah, what did Farmer Bubbe do?
    She took…
    One sack of meal.
    Two cups of oil.
    Three yellow onions.
    Four fresh eggs.
    Five shakes of salt.
    Six white potatoes.
    Seven juicy apples.
    And made eight latkes…
    One just for you!

    (“Neigh” “Oink” “Meh” “Bawk” “Moo” “Woof” “Meow”)

  24. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR LORRAINE

    TWELVE SURPRISES FOR SALLY
    By Lorraine Sharma Nelson

    “I never get big presents,” groused Sally. “Why doesn’t Santa ever send me big, giant presents that nobody else gets?”

    On Christmas morning at 8 a.m., the doorbell rings. When Sally answers it, the mailman smiles at her. “Merry Christmas, Sally. I have a delivery for you.” Right next to him is a giant box, taller even than him.

    Mom and Dad help Sally open the box. Sally peers inside.
    “It’s the first day of Christmas, and Santa sent to me…” Sally whispered…

    “A two-humped camel,” Dad says in astonishment, watching the camel clop out of the box and start munching on the tree.

    As they all stare at the animal, the doorbell rings again. It’s the mailman again, with another big box.

    Two spotted leopards,” Mom yelps in surprise. They saunter out and start lapping up the eggnog in the punchbowl.

    The doorbell rings a third time. “Oh no,” Mom and Dad say together. “Not again.”

    Three tall giraffes step out of the box and immediately start nibbling on Mom’s plants on the highest shelves.

    They were soon followed by four dancing reindeer.

    Five longhorn cows.

    SIx stampeding elephants.

    Seven enormous hippos.

    Eight waddling ducks.

    Nine hopping kangaroos.

    Ten golden condors.

    Eleven prancing horses.

    And finally, twelve dancing bears.

    “Sally?” Dad says, in a very loud voice, because there is a lot of noise in the living room, and he has to shout to make himself heard. “What is all this?”

    “It’s my Christmas gifts from Santa,” Sally says, clapping her hands. “We’re going to have the best Christmas ever.”

    Mom and Dad look at all the animals crowding the living room. “We’re going to need a lot more egg nog,” Mom says.

    “And a bigger dining table,” Dad says.

    “Merry Christmas, Mom and Dad,” Sally says.

  25. Jodi McKay says:

    Thanks for putting this together Susanna! This made the season seem brighter.

    THE WAYS WE CELEBRATE HOLIDAYS: A MERRY MASH-UP
    By: Jodi McKay (245 words)

    Twas’ the time for the holidays and my friends had me thinking,
    How do they celebrate? I don’t have an inkling.
    I wanted to learn, understand, and to see
    What folks ‘round the world honor and believe.

    And to my surprise on my doorstep appeared
    All of my friends, singing holiday cheer.

    “On this very merry holiday we give these gifts to thee…”

    Twelve star pinatas,
    Eleven glowing crowns,
    Ten bowls of noodles,
    Nine toy-filled stockings,
    Eight spinning dreidels,
    Seven honored candles,
    Six prayerful sticks,
    FIVE LAMPS FOR LAKSHMI!
    Four Fiscus trees,
    Three sweet Klaicha,
    Two golden lamps,
    and a box of gratuity.

    Such beautiful gifts from the friends I adore,
    “Come in! Please, come in! I need to know more!”
    So we sang and we danced, we shared stories of ways,
    To celebrate each of these twelve holidays:

    Las Posadas
    St. Lucy’s Day
    Omisoka
    Christmas
    Hanukkah
    Kwanzaa
    Winter Solstice
    Diwali
    Bodhi Day
    Eid
    Chinese New Year
    Boxing Day

    And as snow sprinkled down from the heavens above
    Our group became quite as we soaked in the love.
    We learned what’s important, it’s really quite clear,
    Now we’re paying it forward with this holiday cheer.

    “On this very merry holiday, we give these gifts to thee…”

    Twelve caring carolers
    Eleven well wishes
    Ten heartfelt hugs
    Nine words of wisdom
    Eight great memories
    Seven crafty keepsakes
    Six hands for holding
    FIVE BLISSFUL BLESSINGS!
    Four miracles
    Three peace doves
    Two gifts of hope
    And love of diversity.

    Happy Holidays Kidlit Community!!

  26. Norah says:

    What a wonderful challenge and contest, Susanna. I’m sure there’ll be many wonderful entries. I enjoyed reading your creative sample. I’m sorry I’ve come to the party too late to join in this time, but I look forward to reading the entries.

  27. Ann Kelley says:

    THE TWELVE DAYS OF SANTA’S SURPRISE
    by Ann Kelley

    On the first day of Christmas, Santa breathed a sigh
    and declared, “I need a long nap.”

    On the second day of Christmas, Santa texted his elves:
    “It’s time to begin the planning.”

    On the third day of Christmas, Santa made his list
    and delivered the invitations.

    On the fourth day of Christmas, Santa shoveled snow
    and he stirred a batch of cocoa.

    On the fifth day of Christmas, Santa blew balloons
    and he wrapped the gifts with ribbons.

    On the sixth day of Christmas, Santa texted his elves:
    “What’s the update, tell me please.”

    On the seventh day of Christmas, Santa decked the halls
    and invented games for his reindeer.

    On the eighth day of Christmas, Santa sewed and stuffed
    and then hung the stocking favors.

    On the ninth day of Christmas, Santa sipped his tea
    as he baked nine carrot-cream pies.

    On the tenth day of Christmas, Santa donned his hat
    and he shined his golden buckle.

    On the eleventh day of Christmas, Santa texted his elves:
    “Are the preparations ready?”

    On the twelfth day of Christmas, Santa rang the bells
    and he sang to red-nosed Rudolph.
    “Surprise! Happy Birthday!”

  28. anneuro says:

    The Twelve Days of Canadian Winter
    by Anne Lipton

    On the first day of winter, the True North gave to me
    the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the second day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the third day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Three bobsleds
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the fourth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Four hockey sticks
    Three bobsleds
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the fifth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Five ice rinks
    Four hockey sticks
    Three bobsleds
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the sixth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Six snow geese flying.

    On the seventh day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Seven seals a-swimming.

    On the eighth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Eight Mounties riding.

    On the ninth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Nine skiers schussing
    Eight Mounties riding
    Seven seals a-swimming
    Six snow geese flying
    Five ice rinks
    Four hockey sticks
    Three bobsleds
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

    On the tenth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Ten skaters looping.

    On the eleventh day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Eleven moose a-moosing.

    On the twelfth day of winter, the True North gave to me
    Twelve snowshoes shoeing
    Eleven moose a-moosing
    Ten skaters looping
    Nine skiers schussing
    Eight Mounties riding
    Seven seals a-swimming
    Six snow geese flying
    Five ice rinks
    Four hockey sticks
    Three bobsleds
    Two curling stones
    and the sap of a sugar maple tree.

  29. jsamaltmann (@Jsamaltmann) says:

    The Twelve Days After Christmas

    On the first day after Christmas, Santa looked down at his team from his perch on the balcony in the great hall. “It’s time,” Santa proclaimed, “to get this party started!”

    The lights flicked off as the music came on and they all started dancing.

    On the second day after Christmas, everyone packed their bags and jumped on the sleigh. The whole crew was off to Hawaii.

    They arrived on the third day after Christmas. Santa and Mrs. Claus entered a doubles surfing contest while the elves challenged the reindeer to a high stakes game of beach volleyball. Things got a little wild.

    On the fourth day after Christmas, Santa built an exact sand replica of a wizarding castle. Complete with a gatekeeper’s hut and an owlery.

    The fifth day after Christmas brought the gang to Los Angeles where Santa treated everyone to foot massages and tacos.

    On the sixth day after Christmas, they attended an open casting call for the newest superhero movie. Rudolph’s glowing on-screen presence caught the director’s attention and he was cast in a supporting role.

    On the seventh day after Christmas, to celebrate the New Year, Santa whisked everyone away to a trampoline park. Mrs. Claus double-bounced the elves so high they hit the ceiling.

    The elves spent the eighth day after Christmas icing their sore heads.

    On the ninth day after Christmas, Comet discovered an all you can eat dessert buffet.

    On the tenth day after Christmas, the team learned that it wasn’t a good idea to feast, then roller coaster.

    On the eleventh day after Christmas, Santa attended a council meeting with Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy to discuss top secret plans for the year.

    On the twelfth day after Christmas, Santa smiled, sat down at his desk, and began a new list.

  30. Judy Sobanski says:

    There are so many wonderful entries, Susanna. Thank you for providing the prompt for this fun holiday contest! Here’s my story.

    The Christmas Parade (285 words)

    Judy Sobanski

    My own true love has lost his mind, whatever was he was thinking?

    He sent me lots of feathered fowl, all boisterous and stinking!

    Then people showed up in large groups – some leaping, dancing, piping –

    I hate to grumble, nag and fuss, or sound like I am griping.

    But dancers dance and tap all night; the drummers just keep drumming.

    Twelve days this ruckus has gone on, I pray no more is coming!

    But when life hands you lemons, you must make them lemonade.

    I’m taking all my true love’s gifts and making a parade!

    The drummers, twelve to be exact, will start the whole procession.

    Then next eleven proper pipers follow in succession.

    Ten lords will leap; nine gals will dance, all happy and lighthearted.

    Eight maids will lead the cows that they have milked before they started!

    The biggest problem that I face which has me so frustrated,

    Is how to wrangle all the birds and get them orchestrated?

    I think the answer is a float with lots of Christmas trimming.

    I’ll even add a little pool for seven swans –a- swimming.

    Six geese can lie (or is it lay?) – quite carelessly, wherever.

    The five gold rings? I pawned those things, to pay for this endeavor!

    Four calling birds can flit about; I think they might be Starlings.

    The three French hens, so très bien, I call them “little darlings!”

    Two turtledoves can share a roost; which only leaves the Pear tree

    It’s front and center on the float, the very place where I’ll be!

    This fun parade will wind our way and end on true love’s stoop.

    Then all is fair! What’s in my hair? –oh YUCK, it’s partridge poop!

  31. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR Kristin

    The Twelve Days of Kittymess

    On the first day of Kittymess my “fur-ball” gave to me,
    an ornament falling from my tree,
    On the second day of Kittymess my “fluff-head” gave to me,
    two hairballs and an ornament falling from my tree.
    On the third day of Kittymess my “meow-face” gave to me,
    three baby birds, two hairballs, and an ornament falling from my tree,
    On the fourth day of Kittymess my “pur-pur” gave to me,
    four chewed up mice, three baby birds, two hair balls, and an
    ornament falling from my tree.
    On the fifth day of Kittymess my “yum-yum” gave to me,
    five coughed up fishbones, — four chewed up mice, three baby birds, two
    hair balls, and an ornament falling from my tree.
    On the sixth day of Kittymess my “slob-bomb” gave to me,
    six muddy paws, five coughed up fish, four chewed up mice, three
    baby birds, two hair balls, and an ornament falling from my tree.
    On the seventh day of Kittymess my “scratch-patch” gave to me
    seven tuffs of hair, …
    On the eighth day of Kittymess my “fat-cat” gave to me,
    eight birth’d kittens, …
    On the ninth day of Kittymess my “putty-tat” gave to me,
    nine poopy clumps, eight birth’d kittens, seven tuffs of hair, six muddy paws,
    five coughed up fish bones, four chewed up mice, three baby birds, two hair balls,
    and an ornament falling from tree.
    On the tenth day of Kittymess my “cuddly-whump” gave to me,
    Ten major scratches, nine poopy clumps, eight birth’d kittens, seven tuffs of hair,…
    On the eleventh day of Kittymess my “itch monster” gave to me, eleven biting fleas,..
    On the twelve day of Kittymess, I got my self a dog.

    By Kristin Small

  32. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR KATHERINE

    Chocolate for Santa
    By Katherine Rothstein

    Dear Santa,
    Your visit is my favorite time of year…
    perfect for an aspiring chocolatier.

    I’ve gathered some sprinkles, a whisk, and a spoon.
    Oh Santa, my confections will make you swoon.

    For twelve days of Christmas, I whipped up treats for you.
    I baked and boxed tarts for the reindeer too!

    Down the chimney, to your left, you’ll find beside the tree…
    Twelve brownie bonbons
    Eleven cups of cocoa,
    Ten snicker doodles,
    Nine peppermint patties,
    Eight mitten cookies,
    Seven dipped strawberries,
    Six scoops of ice cream,
    Five choco-late Santas,

    (You don’t have to eat those…that could be weird.
    It’s a mint chocolate YOU with a milk chocolate beard.)

    Four almond stars,
    Three fudge pies,
    Two macaroons,
    And a praline hand-crafted by me.

    Santa, please drop my presents right there on the floor.
    Keep up the great work! Next year I’ll bake more.

    When I wake on Christmas morning, here’s what I hope to see…
    Twelve tips for icing
    Eleven lollypop stands
    Ten chocolate chippers
    Nine pots for melting
    Eight forks for dipping
    Seven ganache cutters
    Six pans for coating
    Five spa gift cards

    (I threw that one in for you-know-who.
    She’s so jolly and helpful, just like you!)

    Four copper bowls
    Three measuring cups
    Two candy molds
    And an apron and an oven mitt for me.

    Santa, thanks for delivering these gifts and tools here.
    Soon, I’ll be a Master with a promising career.

    I’ll make a chocolate sleigh and chocolate boots…
    Even chocolate belts for your Santa suits.

    Have you considered adding a baker or chef to your crew?
    Perhaps, I’ll fly up North for an interview?

    Wishing you sweet joy and holiday cheer,
    I look forward to seeing you again next year!
    Love, Holly

  33. picturebookplaydate says:

    I love these prompts! Thanks for another writing challenge to get me working!

    The Sweetest Treat
    (by Lauren; 219 words)

    Maya had a sweet tooth and Christmas was her favorite time of year. So many parties, so many treats, from gummies to chocolates, there was so much to eat.

    With 12 Days until Christmas, Maya was excited.
    She’d have one special treat each day, she decided.
    Day 1 gummies, green and red.
    Day 2 magnificent banana bread.
    Day 3 milk chocolate.
    Day 4 dark.
    Day 5 delicious peppermint bark.
    Day 6 hot cocoa.
    Day 7 fruitcake.
    Day 8 a yummy gingerbread shake.
    Day 9 sugar cookies.
    Day 10 candy canes.
    Day 11 DISASTER! Horrible stomach pains!

    She grimaced and groaned, and in truth felt quite sick.
    Oh why did she eat that last peppermint stick?
    Her friends came to visit but she wouldn’t let them stay.
    They might want her treats; they had to go away.

    When Day 12 arrived, Maya felt grand.
    She’d enjoy her last treat – solo – as planned.
    A giant tower, made entirely of sweets
    So many goodies, all delicious eats.

    She was ready to dig in, then a thought gave her pause.
    “Maybe instead I *should* share… like Santa Clause!”

    So that’s what Maya did, and Day 12 was great.
    She gave away ten times more than she ate.
    Maya realized something special, this yuletide.
    Sweets taste even better with friends by your side.

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